Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Recovering the palimpsest: A comparison of the original and current versions of the seven most extensively revised volumes in the Nancy Drew mystery stories series
by Walker, Beth, M.A., California State University, Dominguez Hills, 2009, 56; 1481429
Abstract (Summary)

Although the first thirty-four Nancy Drew mysteries were shortened in the 1960s, seven were discarded for new stories published under the old titles. Structural and stylistic differences between the original and revised versions of these seven titles have not been detailed. Instead, the scholarship assumes that the series was revised (1) to modernize characters and plots for a new generation of readers and (2) to eliminate racist stereotypes. This thesis describes these structural and stylistic differences, arguing that the seven volumes were revised because they did not contribute to the series, not because they were “bad” books with outdated plots and stereotypical characters. The changes show that more important than the elimination of stereotypes and the modernization of characters were the removal of violence and contemporary references. Although the revisions reinforced the formula for the series, in both plot and style the revisions are inferior to the originals.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ravitz, Abe C.
School: California State University, Dominguez Hills
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 48/04M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Womens studies, American literature, Rhetoric
Publication Number: 1481429
ISBN: 978-1-109-64921-5
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